Health officials in Karachi reported the fourth death attributed to the brain-eating amoeba Naegleria fowleri, citing a 2011 study that reported 13 cases in Karachi in the same year.
The last two deaths were of a 30-year-old neurosurgeon who suffered from primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) and 8-year-old Zohaib who died to PAM last week at Liaquat National Hospital a few days after contracting it.
The rare and deadly organism has been traced to Karachi’s unsanitary water supply, which also supplies the remaining province.
So far, authorities have determined that more than 95 percent of Karachi’s regional water samples are unsafe for drinking.
Although the Karachi Sewage Council refuses to take responsibility for the life-threatening situation, sewer lines are leaking and contaminating the water supply.
Adding whitening powder to water is not a remedy and experts recommend chlorination of water tanks.
Naegleria fowleri survives on bacteria in warm water and attacks the nervous system when infected water is ingested through the nose during bathing, swimming, or ablution. It can only be killed by proper chlorination or boiling water.